’Know before you go’: Visitor safety a priority in NH State Forests
Before you head out on a day or weekend trip, here are some tips to make your visit an enjoyable one
Heading into the busy fall outdoor recreation season, New Hampshire state officials are reminding everyone spending time in the state’s forests to follow established regulations and precautions so that their outdoor adventures are fun, healthy and safe.
New Hampshire’s 219 state forests cover more than 236,000 acres and offer a wide range of outdoor recreational activities, including hiking, paddling, trail riding, wildlife viewing, nature photography and more.
Visitors can make sure that the time they spend in New Hampshire state forests is safe and enjoyable, both for them and for others, by knowing the following:
- There is no camping allowed in New Hampshire state forests, except in areas that are designated as state park campsites;
- Fires of any kind, including cooking fires, are not permitted in New Hampshire state forests;
- When using off-highway recreational vehicles, stay on designated trails and obey all speed limits and other regulations, as failure to do so can be dangerous to riders, forest animals and the forest itself;
- Forests are not restrooms; human waste is a dangerous for both forest health and the health of those who visit;
- Litter isn’t pretty; follow “Pack In / Pack Out” habits and “Leave No Trace” so that others can enjoy a pristine environment;
- Be prepared for changing weather and terrain conditions, and have the “Ten Essentials” with you just in case your visit doesn’t go according to plan; and
- Park only in designated parking areas and always leave room for first responders.
“While we have been extremely pleased to see an increase in the recreational use of our forests here in New Hampshire this year, unfortunately, some people are exhibiting behaviors that put themselves and others at risk,” said Chief Steven Sherman of the N.H. Division of Forests and Lands’ Forest Protection Bureau. “Restrictions on camping, fires and other activities help ensure that everyone can have a safe and enjoyable time in the forest.”
Part of the N.H. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, the Division of Forests and Lands protects and promotes the value provided by trees, forests and natural communities. For more information about the Division of Forests and Lands, visit nh.gov/nhdfl or call 603-271-2214.